One of the most helpful routines I’ve added to our day since baby’s arrival is an hour long “Quiet Time”.
Do your kids still nap?
None of mine do (except, of course, the baby). Every Mom grieves the end of naptime!
I needed a guaranteed, solid block of time to rest, to have peace and quiet around the house. Especially with a newborn. (At 2 weeks postpartum, I’m still napping once or twice a day.)
Enter Quiet Time.
The concept is simple:
From 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM, the kids are required to stay in their beds and rest. They may read or sleep if they like, or play quietly with toys. No electronics allowed. And for sibs who share a room, no talking.
Interestingly, the two oldest seem to love quiet time the most, and often stay in their rooms for closer to 2 hours. Little Z, who is 10, uses the time to sleep. So does Sadie, almost 5 – who gave up napping two years ago.
The middles sometimes complain about it (frequent opening of doors, going potty every 20 minutes, asking to watch a movie instead, etc), but they still comply. To help them out, my Mom (while she was here helping out) started giving them a little treat/snack as a reward for staying in their rooms and “doing” quiet time.
I’ve definitely noticed a positive change in the kids – they seem to enjoy having a little break from one another. Of course the rest and quiet are good for their mood. They aren’t as hyper before bedtime either. For me, quiet time is a wonderful example of positive, proactive, gentle discipline. It prevents problems before they start, provides structure, and helps the children be their best.
During the homeschool year, I plan on having the 3 older kids read or journal during quiet time. They may be finishing up their schoolwork at that time, but it will be something “light” and enjoyable.
Do you have quiet time at your house?